A media team member can serve everyone in the room. Let’s start by recognizing that these song lyrics and scripture texts you display are the most audacious elements in the room: you display the most precise, explicit-disciple making pronouncements of the day. These lyrics bring resurrection pronouncements! So: thank you for serving. Thank you for being part of the most one of the most important teams in the church. You are valued!
Not only is your role is important; it’s also true that you live in obscurity—unless something goes wrong! As a media team member, here are three things you can think about the next time you sit down to run slides or other media for the worship experience:
- As you begin, tell yourself: This task is for their comfort, not mine. I can’t count the number of times that a media team member has rushed me at the stage to demand that I play the music exactly as written, or the number of times someone demands that I don’t repeat a chorus, or that I don’t improvise in worship. Oftentimes it’s like the media person wants me to serve them instead of us serving the congregation together. We must serve the preacher and the musicians and be flexible (within reason). Serve them and even allow for their mistakes: Miles Davis, the jazz trumpeter, would often hear the mistakes of his other players and he would build their mistakes into his playing so it sounded like it was all actually intentional. In other words, serve your leaders, and serve those who are in those high-pressure places by being flexible and working for their comfort, not your own.
- Keep in mind: You’re bored, but we’re bombarded. Because the media center is your home you can often get bored with the repetitive task of displaying the same words, in the same fonts, and the same images over and over again. Often we might feel compelled to do too much on the screen, to use too much movement, or too much creativity in this space because this is the one place we’re at—and we get bored! But don’t give in to temptation to constantly mix things up. Don’t make things “busy” just for the sake of busy-ness, but serve others through consistency. It can be very helpful
- Practice panic and cool-keeping: sometimes the preacher will have last-minute ideas or need a web search. So in your mind (when things are calm) you should practice what the panic might be like and be ready for last-minute word changes, or songs that you that you don’t have, or how to find scriptures in other versions. Have the mind of somebody who’s always ready for change: for example, EMS or fire personnel. You can be ready for any emergency. Become the cool and non-anxious presence to those you’re serving—even when they’re panicking. You’ll be able say, “Okay let’s work this out.” Or, “I can get this for you.”
Finally, here are a few last tips: test the audio end to the end of everything you do and test video to the end. It will avoid surprises! Again: thanks for how you serve, and I hope that things go so well you’ll never be noticed!